By  on November 2, 2007

Tommy Hilfiger is singing a new tune — one designed for a refined lady — with Dreaming, a new fragrance he will launch in February. The upscale scent will be available in about 1,200 U.S. department stores and could do $10 million at retail in the U.S. in its first year on counter.

Tommy Hilfiger's fragrance business, like his apparel business, is embracing change.

In the wake of the designer's decision last week to sell his sportswear to Macy's only, he's also taking the opportunity to try a new tack with his fragrance business with a new women's fragrance coming in February.

While the designer's scents have long been on an all-American platform — complete with well-scrubbed preppy teens and twentysomethings frolicking on the beach or on horseback — Hilfiger's latest, Dreaming, takes the brand into new territory: sexy and a little more mature.

"This is a sensuous and seductive scent with an element of playfulness," said Hilfiger, adding that the Dreaming customer — an 18- to 30-year-old woman — is a little more sophisticated and slightly less sporty than the teenage target of many of his earlier scents. He's quick to add, though, that the biggest difference between the Tommy Girl customer and the Dreaming customer is "her psyche."

"[The process of] dreaming has an emotional power," said Hilfiger. "This fragrance taps into that power, no matter what [the consumer's] age."

Tommy's new twist is wholeheartedly welcomed by his fragrance licensee, the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc.

"[Tommy's brand] has had a revival," said Veronique Gabai-Pinsky, president of Aramis and Designer Fragrances, the division of Lauder that holds Hilfiger's fragrance license. "Tommy has upgraded his apparel, and we want to do the same for the fragrance."

While the brand is seen as luxurious and aspirational abroad, said Gabai-Pinsky, the brand needs to "reconnect" to those characteristics in Hilfiger's home country. "We believe we'll accomplish that with Dreaming," she said, adding that the concept is one that transcends Hilfiger's all-American approach. "This is truly a global concept," she said.

Hilfiger sees Dreaming as "the horse which will draw the cart" in the next year."The fragrance complements our new apparel direction," he said. "This new road has always been in my dreams, and now it's really happening."

Dreaming, concocted by Trudi Loren, vice president of corporate fragrance development worldwide for Aramis and Designer Fragrances, in cooperation with Givaudan, has a top note of peach skin; a heart of white hibiscus, tuberose and freesia, and a drydown of white woods and orris.

The collection will include a 5-ml. parfum, priced at $125; and eaux de parfum in 1-oz., 1.7-oz. and 3.4-oz. sizes, priced at $35, $45 and $60, respectively. Ancillaries include a 6.7-oz. body lotion, $30; a 6.7-oz. body wash, $26; a rollerball-lip gloss combo, $20, and a 3-gram solid perfume pendant, $45.

The collection will be available in about 1,200 U.S. department store doors. As with all of Hilfiger's licensed products, fragrance will continue to be sold to other department stores in addition to Macy's.

National advertising, featuring blonde model Mona Johannesson, breaks in March fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazines. Hilfiger calls the campaign "a throwback to icons from Hollywood's golden age," citing Grace Kelly and Marilyn Monroe as inspirations. "[These actresses] have always been a source of inspiration for me, and Mona in this ad typifies their style — sensuous, yet playful." There are three iterations of the ad: a single-page version featuring a bare Johannesson wrapped around a pillow, which will not include a scented strip; a second single-page image of Johannesson standing with a sheet wrapped around her, which will include a sample of the scent, and a double-page ad showing Johannesson in bed, a strategically placed sheet hiding the naughty bits. A silhouette of the bottle is present in each of the ad images, which were shot by Camilla Akrans at Pier 59 Studio at Chelsea Piers in Manhattan.

A national TV commercial, directed by Cyril Guyot, is also planned for the brand for holiday 2008. It features a song recorded especially for the campaign, "The Dreaming Song," by Jason Rowe.

Dreaming will also be supported by a dedicated Web site,, which will feature music downloads and an interactive component with dream expert Craig Webb. It will go live in February 2008.A sampling campaign is also planned, with a target of 30 million scented impressions.

While none of the executives would discuss sales projections or advertising spending, industry sources estimated that Dreaming would do about $60 million globally, with some $10 million expected to be done in the U.S. The U.S. advertising and promotional spending is expected to top $8 million in its first year.

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